Once upon a time in history people held to the belief that faith and prayer could make all the difference when faced with difficulty. Children would run to their mothers and fathers for guidance on what to do when confronted with the unknown. But that was then. Now people turn to Oprah, Wendy Williams, YouTube, reality TV, and other media to face their demons. We live in an age where technology makes everything convenient and quick. We no longer have to wait for our needs to be met; if you need advice turn on the TV. If you need to talk to someone create a video and tell the world. If you need to feel loved just add as many people to your Facebook account as you can and there is all the love you need.
However, disease, disaster & dilemmas have not taken a vacation. We are constantly faces with problems in our lives that technology and talk show cannot fix. We humans are facing the worst global, financial and health crisis in history and yet the cry for prayer is minimal. Hope appears to be replaced with inevitable expectations. So has God stop caring or have we? Whatever God is to you, I am sure the answer is no.
That being said, HIV is no longer the horrible plague portrayed in the 80's but it has since become a pandemic that can no longer be ignored. For that fact, neither can any other disease. Why can't we cure it or any other diseases? There are no easy answers to that question, but one of the biggest components of the growth in disease and chaos is fear. Fear is the basis for so much of what is wrong in the world and once you let go of the fear then everything has a solution.
I discovered this answer for myself before I was even diagnosed with HIV. When I was told that I had what the media was describing as a 'lethal disease', I had knowledge as my weapon and shield. And to this day that have provided me with strength to endure. I didn't look at the diagnosis as the end, but rather a beginning to a new way of living. I saw through the stigma and the rhetoric and continued living my life like any other person would. Granted I had to consume medication to boost my immune system but I did not worry.
However, my story is not unlike many people who came to the realization that life does not end because of disease. I am sure many have heard of the famous Lance Armstrong who survived a battle with cancer. But what makes people like Lance, myself and others able to navigate through the tribulations that life has to offer. What is it that motivated us to continue our lives as normal and not let disease bring us down? That is simple, faith.
You see earlier I started this blog with what appeared to be a story about faith in God. But not everyone believes in the same thing so I could not say that it is God that saved us. Although, for me that is the case. What really saved us is the faith that we are meant for something more. What that "something more" is I can't really say as it is different for every individual, but what I can say is that faith in whatever you believe in is what will cause you to live.
You see there is nothing in the world that we can't face as humans. We have proven that over and over again throughout history. Whether it be natural disaster, war, crime or even death, the human spirit is can survive nearly anything life has to offer. So to the reader I submit that life is not something to be taken lightly. Nothing is final. We have all heard that life is what you make, and when faced with anything in life you have to decide whether to move forward or to give in.
I am a young male who is faced with HIV, HEP C, Heart Disease, High Blood Pressure, Kidney disease, and bipolar depression, and there is the possibility that I could have a cancer. So what should I do about this? I will tell you. LIVE! I have no choice in the matter. I have much to offer the world and why should let the aforementioned conditions stand in my way. For that matter, why should any of us let anything stand in our way. We should be the ones to decide when we are going to leave this earth and not our diagnosis.
So for those who read this blog who may have a diagnosis of HIV or whatever you have, I say to you LIVE! Why let what the media and others tell you what you should do next? Why would you turn to reality TV, Oprah, Wendy, text or emails to help you decide what to do with your life? After all it is YOUR life, not Oprah's, Wendy's and certainly the life of the current technology. So don't give anything or anyone YOUR life. And if you have, take it back!!!
I have been living with HIV for 14years, kidney disease (in both kidneys) for 5years, Hepatitis C for 8years, Bipolar depression for 12years, and heart disease for 2years. I realize there are things I left out like meds I took, procedures I went through, and other steps I took to make it this far. But that is because none of that is important. The whole point I have been trying to make is that faith is the only thing that has truly gotten me through. For me, my faith is rooted in God. For you, your faith could be in Allah, Buddha, or whatever. However, what is the most important is that you have the faith in your right to live. As long as you have that and adhere to the tools that will assist you in your faith to live then nothing can stop you but you. And if that is not enough, then know this; I have faith in you!